Thoughts Regarding ‘Both Purity Culture and Hook-Up Culture Failed Me’ by A. Murrish

Thoughts Regarding ‘Both Purity Culture and Hook-Up Culture Failed Me’ by A. Murrish

First, here is a link to the page I will be discussing:

(Link): Both Purity Culture and Hook-Up Culture Failed Me

I don’t care for this editorial.

For one thing it sort of spiritualizes the status of singleness, which is grating to any adult over the age of 35, who had hoped to marry, but is still single.

Next, the author points to the church as a solution for singles.

She is essentially telling marriage-desiring singles to lose themselves in church, to find belonging in church groups.

The problem with this is that for many never-married adults (and some divorced and widowed) over the age of 30, most churches either ignore adult singles, or they insult adult singles, because they are too preoccupied with promoting marriage and catering to the needs of married couples.

Continue reading “Thoughts Regarding ‘Both Purity Culture and Hook-Up Culture Failed Me’ by A. Murrish”

The Rhetoric of Singleness Blog – Links, Comments, Thoughts

The Rhetoric of Singleness Blog

Warning: I discovered through further reading that the author of the blog is a complementarian. I disagree with complementarianism; more on that below.

Had I known from the start she is a complementarian, I may not have started composing this post. I am leery of pointing anyone to a complementarian resource, but here we are.


As of today, I see only a small number of posts on the The Rhetoric of Singleness blog, dating from April 2017, and this blog appears to be from a Christian perspective – but then, her blog does not display a list or pull down menu of all her posts.

Even though the blog looks to be on hiatus, I’ll link to it on the off chance the blogger resumes writing again.

The person behind this blog says she’s single, in her 30s, and has yet to marry but would like to.

(Link): The Rhetoric of Singleness Blog – main page

Some of the only posts I am seeing on this blog include:

(Link): Pursuing Marriage

In that “Pursuing Marriage” post, she says she is a believer in gender complementarianism.

For example, here’s part of what she writes:

So, what options does that leave me, a woman with a complementary view of gender roles, of pursuing marriage? I know for some women who see no options left to them there is a strong temptation to bitterness, resentment, and to denigrate our single brothers who are called by God to the leadership role in the pursuit of marriage.

// end excerpt

Oh no. I (Link): used to be a complementarian myself but ditched it by my mid 30s.

I heard all the same stuff from conservative Christians growing up, as this other blogger likely did, such as, how (Link): men are supposed to be the heads in marriages, God supposedly created women pretty much to exist (Link): only to wait on menand so on.

(And I remained a conservative, even after I realized that complementarianism is false and actually quite sexist – it doesn’t just teach that men and women “complement” one another but that there should be a male hierarchy, of men ruling over women.

Contrary to what complementarians would have you believe, abandoning gender complementarianism will not turn you into a left wing, abortion-supporting, man-hating feminist. I am still right wing, even after leaving complementarianism.)

I am no longer a complementarian, but can pin point complementarianism, among a few other things, as being (Link): one reason as to why I am in my 40s and never got married.

Continue reading “The Rhetoric of Singleness Blog – Links, Comments, Thoughts”

Critique of Pastor Groeschel’s “I Want to Believe But…” Sermon Series (Re: Unanswered Prayer, etc)

Critique of Pastor Groeschel’s “I Want to Believe But…” Sermon Series

Christian Post recently published this summary of Groeschel’s sermons, and I take strong issue with it, which I will explain below the long excerpts from the page – but if I didn’t blog my criticisms of this guy’s sermon, I was going to go nuts -several of his points or assumptions annoyed me up the wall:

(Link): God Is Not Your Puppet, Says Pastor Craig Groeschel by A. Kumar

Here are some excerpts from that page, and I will comment on this below the excerpts, which is pretty long, so please bear with me:

Pastor Craig Groeschel, senior pastor of Life.Church, has started a new series, “I Want to Believe, But…,” to address difficulties some have in believing in God.

In the series’ first sermon on Sunday, the megachurch pastor dealt with the notion that God should give us exactly what we want and when we want it.
“God is too big to be a puppet of mine,” he stressed.

Some believe in God and others don’t, but there’s “a newer category of people that are saying, ‘I wanna believe in God but I’m struggling to,'” the popular pastor said as he introduced the (Link): series to the congregation on Sunday, the 21st anniversary of the church.

Continue reading “Critique of Pastor Groeschel’s “I Want to Believe But…” Sermon Series (Re: Unanswered Prayer, etc)”

How Do We Solve a Problem Like the Singles? by R. Kilgore

How Do We Solve a Problem Like the Singles?  by Rachel Kilgore

Before I get to the link to the essay by Kilgore, which is hosted at MOS (Mortificiation of Spin / specifically, Aimee Byrd’s blog, ‘Housewife Theologian’):

For years and years on this blog, here on “Christian Pundit” blog, I have been explaining over and over again that most evangelical, Baptist, Reformed, and Fundamentalist Christian denominations, churches, and groups IGNORE adults singles – the older a single you are, the worse it is – the more ignored you are.

I have also commented on other people’s blogs under the Christian Pundit blog name, and under other names, alerting Christians to how horribly American Christians treat adult singles. I have Tweeted about it.

When Christians aren’t ignoring us older singles, and they do manage to notice our existence, many Christians shame us for being single. They insult us. They try to make us feel like we are losers (seriously, see (Link): this post, (Link): this post, (Link): this post), (Link): this post – I could cite many more examples from my blog of anti-Singles bias by Christians, but that should suffice.)

I used to be what is called a gender complementarian.  I am not interested in spending a lot of time explaining what that means.

I am no longer a gender complementarian.

I am linking you here to a post about adult singleness at a blog (the one by A. Byrd) owned by what I would term “soft gender complementarians.”

Continue reading “How Do We Solve a Problem Like the Singles? by R. Kilgore”

Preacher Perry Noble Gives Advice to Adult Singles On How To Date and Marry Days Before Articles Say He’s Having Marriage Problems – Consider the Source

Preacher Perry Noble Gives Advice to Adult Singles On How To Date and Marry Days Before Articles Say He’s Having Marriage Problems – Consider the Source

As I’ve said before, Consider the Source when listening to dating advice.

On July 6th, Christian Post published a page with dating advice by pastor Perry Noble.

On July 8th, Christian Post published an article suggesting that Noble may have been fired from his church for, among other things, marital problems.

Why is a guy who is in the midst of having marital issues writing dating advice for singles? Please. Does the phoniness in contemporary Evangelical Land know no limits?

From what I’ve seen on the internet the last two, three days, Noble’s church is expected to announce tomorrow that he was fired, probably due to marital conflicts or alcoholism or something.

Continue reading “Preacher Perry Noble Gives Advice to Adult Singles On How To Date and Marry Days Before Articles Say He’s Having Marriage Problems – Consider the Source”

Don’t Give Up On Your Dreams

Don’t Give Up On Your Dreams

Don’t Let Someone Who Gave Up On Their Dreams Talk You Out Of Yours

In a couple of posts in the past (such as (Link): this one), I discussed the disheartening trend I see in Christian books, articles, interviews, or blogs by (1.) other never-married adult Christians who are over age of 35 or 40 (or, (2.) on occasion by married Christians who condescendingly lecture adult singles on these issues).

These (I am speaking of group 1 above) are adults who had hoped to marry, but they remain single into their late 30s or beyond.

(There is also another group, Christians who are over 40 years of age, who are thrilled and totally at peace at having never married and never really cared either way if they ever married or not. They are guilty of what I write about in this post, too.

Hell, I sometimes see single Christians below the age of 35 who are guilty of this, but their views stem more from being naive about life.)

The never-married Christians, who are past the age of 35 or 40, who have given up on ever getting married themselves then turn around in their interviews, articles, and books and shame other post-age-35 singles from pursuing marriage.

I kid you not. They will guilt trip you if you still hope to marry some day, and you are past 35 years old.

They have given up hope of ever getting married themselves, so they go about trying to convince other singles to give up, too. They will try to shame you out of pursuing your dream. They will tell you that at 40, you are too old to be on dating sites and still expecting marriage.

They believe you should only think of “eternity,” or, they will argue, you should be consumed in this life only with thoughts about Jesus or with how to serve Jesus in the here and now.

They will shame you by telling you that it’s selfish, immature, un-christian, or self-centered (or a combination of all those things) to go after an earthly pursuit such as marriage, even though Jesus did not preach a “pie in the sky” theology, but said he came so that you may have life more abundantly – that means NOW, not after you’re dead.

Many Christians believe in a theology of CODEPENDENCY and ASCETICISM, both of which are condemned in the Bible (see for example Colossians 2:16-22). It is okay to seek after your own personal happiness in the here and now. People who tell you otherwise are peddling false doctrine.

Don't Give Up On Your Dreams
Don’t Give Up On Your Dreams

If you are over 35, have never been married, and would still like to be, don’t let anyone else dissuade you from pursuing marriage, especially the ones who once held the dream but have given up.
———————-
Related posts:

(Link): It’s Not Too Late, And You’re Not Too Old

(Link): Radical Christianity – New Trend That Guilt Trips American Christians For Living Average Lives

(Link): Christian Singles Never Marrieds – it’s okay to get your needs met

(Link): Christian Double Standard – Pray Earnestly For Anything & Everything – Except Marriage?

(Link): Singleness is Not A Gift

(Link): Desire for Marriage is Idolatry?

(Link): Gift of Singleness Gift of Celibacy Unbiblical – Those Terms and Teachings Contribute to Fornication / Editorial About Sex Surrogates

This applies to marriage, too:
(Link): Hypocrisy in Christian Culture – Those who idolize parenting chide infertiles for trying to have kids
———————————-

Old Testament Studies Blog on Various Topics From Early Marriage to Sexual Sin to Evangelical and Baptist Propensity to Make an Idol Out of Family Marriage and Parenthood Etc Etc

Old Testament Studies Blog on Various Topics From Early Marriage to Sexual Sin to Evangelical and Baptist Propensity to Make an Idol Out of Family Marriage and Parenthood Etc Etc

I’m not necessarily in agreement with all views of the guy behind this blog, the OTSB (Old Testament Studies Blog).

For one, he seems to be a Calvinist, and I disagree with Calvinism.

OTSB guy discusses some of the same issues at his blog that I discuss here on mine. It looks as though he has not made a new blog entry since October 2013.

Blog’s Main Page:
(Link): Old Testament Studies

(Link): The Dark Side of Evangelicalism-A Response to Accusations on the Boundless Blog
(Re: Christians denigrating singlehood and idolizing marriage)

Excerpts:

    The case in point is a recent radio podcast put out by the folks over at Boundless. Steve and Candice Watters were in Louisville, Kentucky for the Give me an Answer conference at Southern Seminary.

    While they were there, they interviewed Albert Mohler for their podcast.

    During the podcast, the following dicussion took place. I want you to read this carefully, and ask yourself if what Dr. Mohler says in the bold portion is consistent with scripture! It begins at 24:15:

    Candice- Are you encouraged by Mark Regnerus and others who are encouraging early marriage, and do you think that this movement will gain traction?

    Dr. Mohler- Well, I’ve been at that a long time, and I can tell you its extremely controversial whereas throughout most of human history that would be the mormal expectation.

    I am encouraged…It’s going to be a counter-revolution. We are literally going to have to stand against the kind of demographic tide that is coming at us, and say…you know, here is the question.

    I just want to ask you this honestly. I talk to young guys about this more than probably any other subject when they bring it up and say, you know, here is the issue: How are you going to be holy without marriage?

    And that’s a tough question to answer, unless, you know, if God has called you to missions, if God’s called you to special service and deployment in this area, then the word is going to compensate for that, but, for most guys, the big issue is just this now long wait.

(Link): Kristin and Ted Kluck Write of the Familiolatry in the Modern Church

(Link): Famliolatry on Display Again

(Link): Why Getting Married Early Will Not Stop Sexual Sin

(Link): Marital Gnosticism in Evangelicalism

Excerpts:

    I think we as a church have boughten into a form of gnosticism which I will call “marital gnosticism.” We seem to think that the way to the higher Christian life is through marriage, and, although single people are a part of the church, they simply are not as “enlightened” as those who are married.

    Hence, we need to encourage, and even shame single people into getting married, so that they will become “enlightened” like the rest of the married people. It is gross, ridiculous, gnostic thinking.

    Not only does it not work [marriage cannot change the heart; only Christ can], even worse, it alienates singles. Singles who see this kind of behavior know that they are not part of the “enlightened” gnostic group, and thus, they are pushed further and further away.

(Link): Another “Marriage is a Cure All” Message

(Link): Horrendus Eisegesis from Evangelicals in the Culture War

(Link): Challenging the Challenge to the “Unnecessary” Delay of Marriage

Continue reading “Old Testament Studies Blog on Various Topics From Early Marriage to Sexual Sin to Evangelical and Baptist Propensity to Make an Idol Out of Family Marriage and Parenthood Etc Etc”

Just How Family-Centered Is the Bible? by J. Starke – An Essay that Hits and Misses

Just How Family-Centered Is the Bible? by J. Starke

I offer this link with a caveat or four.

Before I get to the link itself, here are a few of my problems with it (with additional critique below the link and excerpts from it).

This essay comes from a site sponsored by a bunch of people, “The Gospel Coalition,” a phrase which sounds so darn “biblical,” but I sharply disagree with them (not all their views are ‘biblical’).

The Gospel Coalition is comprised, for example, of Neo Calvinists (or they support Neo Cal preachers and doctrine; I am not sure if every last writer at their site is a Neo Cal).

Further, they are gender complementarian (also known as “biblical womanhood and biblical manhood.” As taught by these people, their views of gender roles are not biblical.

If you’d like to see a contrary conservative, biblical Christian view about gender and gender roles, please read the material at (Link): Christians For Biblical Equality.)

There are some aspects of this writing that seem to be an even-handed essay telling Christians to be careful about not making too much out of “family” and “marriage” to the point either or both become idols, but there are still one or two aspects of this that I still disagree with and will comment on that below the long excerpt.

(Link): Just How Family-Centered Is the Bible? by J. Starke

Starke begins his editorial discussing how marriage today is in trouble, divorce is on the rise, and so on.

Excerpts:

    by J Starke

    …. But with every response [by Christians to issues in secular culture such as rising divorce rates], there’s always the danger of over-correction.

    It’s not that I think some evangelicals have become too conservative or too traditional. I worry that they’ve simply adopted traditional cultural and societal norms, instead of biblical norms.

    Zechariah

    … The two birth announcements in the Gospel of Luke to Zechariah and Mary reveal how a society’s “traditional” family values may not line up with God’s.

    Zechariah, the priest married to a barren woman, and Mary both heard miraculous announcements about impending childbirth.

    Yet while Zechariah responded with skepticism and doubt, Mary responded with faith and wonder.

    So why would Zechariah, a priest, doubt an angel of the Lord? He knew the story of Abraham and Sarah, so the idea of an older, barren woman giving birth wouldn’t be ridiculous to him.

    But consider Zechariah and Elizabeth’s situation. Some of you may know the pain of not being able to have children.

    It’s the feeling of 10, 20, even 30 years deeply desiring children with hopes unfulfilled.

    Zechariah and Elizabeth also suffered shame. Luke 1:24-25 reveals Elizabeth’s heart. She said, “Thus the Lord has done for me in the days when he looked on me, to take away my reproach among people.”

    By reproach she meant the shame that comes from known barrenness. Maybe some of you have experienced this reproach from more conservative societies, where family is held in such a high regard.

    If you’re nearing your 40s with no children and maybe not even married, you start to receive questions like, “When are you going to get yourself a husband?” “When are we going to start seeing some little ones around here?” You hear the whispers. Every baby shower brings guilt and shame.

    Zechariah and Elizabeth also dealt with questions about whether they did something wrong to deserve barrenness.

    Was there some hidden sin? Worse, Zechariah was a religious leader, a priest!

    Can you imagine how this public shame undermined his position, his authority?

    So for Zechariah, pain and sorrow turned to shame and disgrace. He held on tightly to the cultural idol of family. This idol filled his heart so that there was no room for the truth of God’s promise, even if he heard it from an angel. The good news of a coming son did not inspire joy but unbelief. It’s too late. We’re too old.

    … But there’s another wrong view. A society can make the family the most important thing. It can become an idol, something that fundamentally defines us. We regard anyone who never marries or cannot have children as somehow subhuman. They must have done something wrong to upset God.

    …By contrast, the Bible actually teaches a radically subversive message about the family. God, we often discover, is the cause of barrenness in women.

    Stories of family dynamics rarely flatter. You’ll never find a Leave it to Beaver household in the Bible. Rather, we see constant distress, rivalry, and jealousy.

    Usually this dynamic doesn’t result from undervaluing children. No, we see it when children become the most important thing! Not only that, Jesus also has some deeply alarming things to say about the family, sounding almost cold and uncaring—see Mark 3:31-35 and Luke 14:26.

    And finally, it’s difficult to make family the most central thing for Christians when the two most prominent figures in the New Testament, Jesus and the apostle Paul, were both single. Actually, Christianity made singleness a legitimate way of life for the first time in any culture or religion.

    Christ and the Church

    Before you thumb your noses at traditional values on marriage and family, remember this: When God wanted to paint a picture of his great love for he church and cost of his death, he cited marriage between a husband and wife. God in Jesus Christ is the faithful and sacrificial husband for his bride, the church.

    ….While the family cannot be so important that it invades the space in our heart that only God should occupy, we see that even from Creation, God designed marriage and family to result in a maturing society. Zechariah, however, warns us not to make family the ultimate thing. He turned it into a false god, leaving no room for the truth of the real God.

    … But their [Christians’] convictions should come from the Bible, not simply the norms of traditional societies.

I commend this author for pointing out that some Christians have turned marriage and family into idols, but I feel he gets a few things wrong and makes a few comments that are insensitive to certain types of people.

Here are some additional problems I have with this paper, as outlined below.

Starke starts out sounding sympathetic to barren or single adults who desire marriage and/or children. Starke writes,

    ..Zechariah and Elizabeth also dealt with questions about whether they did something wrong to deserve barrenness.

    Was there some hidden sin? Worse, Zechariah was a religious leader, a priest! Can you imagine how this public shame undermined his position, his authority?

I don’t recall the Bible explicitly saying that this couple was shamed and blamed for being without children, but Starke assumes this was so.

If we grant Starke that point:

When I first read this essay, I assumed Starke “felt” for Zack and Liz (Zechariah and Elizabeth) and how terrible it must have been for this couple to have supposedly been shamed or insulted over their childlessness.

Instead of rebuking the judgmental pro-family types for shaming “Zack and Liz” for being without children, which is what Starke should be doing, Starke instead shames and blames Zack and Liz themselves for supposedly having had made “the family” into an idol (though the biblical text does not say this).

I have more to say about this below this next excerpt.

Starke wrote:

    So for Zechariah, pain and sorrow turned to shame and disgrace. He held on tightly to the cultural idol of family. This idol filled his heart so that there was no room for the truth of God’s promise, even if he heard it from an angel.

There is nothing wrong with Zechariah, or with anyone, wanting to have a spouse or a child.

Simply wanting or desiring something that the Bible does not condemn does not mean one is idolizing it, yet Christians constantly make this leap.

I find this attitude by Stark fairly insensitive.

I have observed for many years now that among Christians who idolize marriage and family, it is made an idol by those who are already married, who are already parents, who tell the never-married and the infertile they are not as good, godly, mature, and worthy as marrieds and parents (hence my one stop threads on (Link): marriage and (Link): parenthood).

It’s the already married and those who are already parents who have turned marriage and parenthood into idols, not the childless and not the singles.

How cruel it is when the majority of Christian culture sets both things up -marriage and parenthood- as idols to be prized and then shames, rebukes, or blames an unmarried person for wanting a spouse, for seeking a spouse, or for an infertile couple to seek medical care to become pregnant.

Christian singles are told by Christians that they are not as mature, godly, or responsible as married couples are, but if they still desire marriage or attempt to get married – by using dating sites, for example – they are told they are “idolizing” marriage.

It’s a highly hypocritical move that Christians foist on other Christians, but they do it constantly.

I’ve written of it before in pages such as:

When Starke advises Christians not to turn marriage and family into idols, who exactly is he warning?

Because it sounds to me as though Starke is, in this essay, further shaming and blaming singles or infertiles who hanker after spouse and children, when he should be solely directing his criticisms at the overall Christian culture, which is maintained and controlled by people who are, 99% of the time, married with children.

Most churches will not even consider permitting un-married adults into positions of leadership, teaching, or preaching. Churches are heavily biased against singles and childless individuals or couples.

Singles should not be shamed for wanting or seeking marriage, and childless people should not be shamed for seeking to have children, especially not in a culture, Christian culture, that keeps cramming the idea down everyone’s throats that marriage and parenthood are more “godly” than singlehood or the state of childlessness, and how marriage and family is so important and fundamental for American society.

Wanting to be married is not “idolatry.” I have discussed that in a few posts before, such as in one by Mark Driscoll (I believe it was this post, (Link): More Singles Commentary by Mark Driscoll (“Two Mistakes Singles Make”), or, it may have been in this post: (Link): Mark Driscoll on Single Christian Women Who Desire Marriage – the positives and negatives of his piece ), and this one:

It also seems to me that the author dances around the stereotype that singles who hate being single and long for marriage are “bitter” which in turn is a component of “singles shaming.”

I’d say most of us older singles are not “bitter” about it, but have either come to terms with it, or feel sad about it at times, or both.

You can largely come to accept your single status but occasionally feel sad about it.

You can also point out how wrong Christians are to idolize marriage and treat adult singles like trash, but that does not make one “bitter” – it’s offering a much needed critique of Christian culture.

(Link): The Netherworld of Singleness for Some Singles – You Want Marriage But Don’t Want to Be Disrespected or Ignored for Being Single While You’re SingleStarke writes,

    While the family cannot be so important that it invades the space in our heart that only God should occupy, we see that even from Creation, God designed marriage and family to result in a maturing society”

“God designed marriage and family to result in a maturing society?” He did? Really? Please provide book, chapter, and verse for that, because I don’t see anywhere in the Bible that declares this.

That belief that God intends “family” to be for the “maturing” of society, or to act as its backbone, is not even mentioned in the book of Genesis, which describes God creating the first married couple, Adam and Eve, and Adam and Eve having their first son.

That God allegedly uses marriage for anything (beyond anything other than for continuation of the human species and as one illustration of Jesus’ relationship to the church) -as a building block of culture, to sanctify people, to mature people and such- are merely assumptions Christians make repeatedly, with no biblical basis.

I’ve written about this issue before, like in this post:

Starke says,

    Before you thumb your noses at traditional values on marriage and family, remember this: When God wanted to paint a picture of his great love for he church and cost of his death, he cited marriage between a husband and wife. God in Jesus Christ is the faithful and sacrificial husband for his bride, the church.

I also wonder who these comments are aimed at. Who does he think may be “thumbing her nose at” marriage?

I am over 40 years of age and still would like to be married. I am not “anti marriage.”

I am very disturbed and angered at how highly other Christians elevate marriage, to the point marriage, and the 1950s nuclear family unit, is turned into a “golden calf” they worship.

Continue reading “Just How Family-Centered Is the Bible? by J. Starke – An Essay that Hits and Misses”

Some Lady Tells Singles Not To Feel Sad on Valentine’s Day

Some Lady Tells Singles Not To Feel Sad on Valentine’s Day

This is sort of like my last post,
(Link): Insensitive Valentine Meme – you can’t feel sad about being single if your parents are still living

From Jezebel:
(Link): Instead of Getting Sad on Valentine’s Day, Try Not Giving a Fuck

I’m not sure if the woman who wrote this is single or married.

The odd thing about this woman’s page is that while on the one hand she seems to try to be encouraging singles, it comes across as a form of “singles shaming” to me. Maybe that was not her intent, but that’s how it came across to me.

Here are a few excerpts:

    by M. Davies

  • So you’re spending Valentine’s Day alone and feeling sad about it. What do you do? Curl up on the couch and cry? Stare forlornly into the window of a restaurant packed with couples who are sharing the same long spaghetti noodle like the dogs in Lady and the Tramp? Well, knock it off, sister. You’re a grown-ass woman — W-O-M-Y-N — and it’s time that you figured out that Valentine’s Day only matters when you make it matter. SO STOP MAKING IT MATTER.
  • There was a time when I used to get really sad about being alone on Valentine’s Day. That time was high school, when I was too young and dumb to know better.
  • …But maybe your friends are different than mine and they do make you feel bad about being alone on Valentine’s Day. Well, I hate to break it to you, but you have some shitty friends. That or it’s projection on your part, in which case this probably goes deeper than Valentine’s Day and chances are you’ll be sad on February 15th, 16th and maybe even when you finally get a significant other because, guess what, they won’t solve all your problems either.

That lady’s “buck up, buckeroo about being single on Valentine’s Day” page read more like “shut up you whiny cry baby whiner.” If she was trying to encourage singles who are unhappy about being single, I’m guessing it had the opposite effect on most people who read that page.

Continue reading “Some Lady Tells Singles Not To Feel Sad on Valentine’s Day”

Singles Who Desire Marriage and 1 Corinthians 7 – but 1 Timothy 4:3 – Also: Singlehood and Messed Up Hermeneutics

Singles Who Desire Marriage and 1 Corinthians 7 – it’s benefits, drawbacks – also: 1 Timothy 4:3 and Christians cannot agree on biblical doctrine

I first began this post with only an intent on discussing 1 Corinthians 7 in mind, but as I began typing, it meandered a little into other (but related) topics, then I wandered back to the 1 Cor 7 discussion.

(Link): Read 1 Corinthians 7 Online, on Bible Gateway

My commentary is below this long excerpt.

Excerpts from 1 Cor 7,

    8 Now to the unmarried and the widows I say: It is good for them to stay unmarried, as I do.

9 But if they cannot control themselves, they should marry, for it is better to marry than to burn with passion.

…25 Now about virgins: I have no command from the Lord, but I give a judgment as one who by the Lord’s mercy is trustworthy.

26 Because of the present crisis, I think that it is good for a man to remain as he is.

27 Are you pledged to a woman? Do not seek to be released. Are you free from such a commitment? Do not look for a wife.

28 But if you do marry, you have not sinned; and if a virgin marries, she has not sinned. But those who marry will face many troubles in this life, and I want to spare you this.

…. 32 I would like you to be free from concern. An unmarried man is concerned about the Lord’s affairs—how he can please the Lord.
33 But a married man is concerned about the affairs of this world—how he can please his wife—
34 and his interests are divided. An unmarried woman or virgin is concerned about the Lord’s affairs: Her aim is to be devoted to the Lord in both body and spirit. But a married woman is concerned about the affairs of this world—how she can please her husband.
35 I am saying this for your own good, not to restrict you, but that you may live in a right way in undivided devotion to the Lord.

I have had a blog visitor who says she (or he? Though I think she is a she) loathes and hates 1 Cor 7.

I left her a reply under a previous thread which reads:

    • I actually rather

like

    • 1 Corinthians 7,

except

    when it’s used as a weapon or condescending slogan against singles who want marriage.

But, in other contexts, I like that 1 Cor 7 passage, because married Christians (who are the ones who idolize marriage) need to be reminded that marriage is not better than singleness… that is, churches / body of Christ need to stop showing favortism to married with children couples, as they often do.

If anything, I see some pastors (such as Mark Driscoll, whom I wrote about recently (Link): here ), twist and distort 1 Cor 7 and try to explain it away – because he (and other Christians) view singles as being abnormal, or they view the state of singleness as being abnormal, or not as good as, being married, which is an INSULT to adult singles.

I know it can hurt or be frustrating to want marriage when you are single BUT (at least for me), so long as you are single, until you marry one day (assuming you marry), don’t you want preachers and other married Christians to stop acting as though you are somehow lower or not as godly or mature, or not deserving of a church’s finances and time, just because you are single?

That is why I like to toss 1 Cor 7 in their faces (and other passages).

I’ve sort of written on this topic here:
(Link): The Netherworld of Singleness for Some Singles – You Want Marriage But Don’t Want to Be Disrespected or Ignored for Being Single While You’re Single

There are some never married Christian adults who actually LOVE the GOS (“Gift of Singleness” or “of celibacy,” “GOC”) talk, they have stopped by this blog before to say they like these phrases…

I can’t get these types of adult, Christian singles to see that not only is neither phrase in the Bible, but the phrases are mis-used and abused by married Christians and preachers to keep singles single – the ones who want marriage.

The GOS/GOC talk and terms are used to maintain discrimination against singles. (I’ve blogged about that before, just search the blog using the phrase “gift of singleness.”)

I also have many blog posts talking about the cliches that Christian singles who desire marriage get from married Christians, and it annoys me too. Here are a few posts about it:

(Link): Article: My Savior My Spouse? – Is God or Jesus Your Husband Isaiah 54:5

(Link): Annoyance of Being A Christian Single (has list of cliches’ one hears from married Christians and friends at church, in sermons, etc)

… I have similar blog posts, those are just a few.

To sum up, 1 Cor 7 can be a helpful ally and tool in the arsenal of an adult Christian single who runs into Christians who idolize marriage – the ones who behave as though single adults are losers.

I was at a right wing, political blog where all the married people were responding to a news story about childless and single women.

Many of these right wing people on that blog were insulting singles and the state of being childless.

Even secular right wingers tend to make an idol out of marriage, parenting, and the nuclear family.

Many married right wingers, even the secular ones, assume women who are never-married and childless past their 30s are man-hating, atheistic feminists who vote Democrat and have posters of Obama all over their bedroom walls with lipstick-kiss marks on them.

These types of right wing morons never realize that women can be conservative Republican and/or Christians and be single and childless into adulthood, based on circumstances they had no control over, or, based on their choice (but choices which are NOT based on atheism, feminism, liberalism, or hatred of God, country, conservatives, or babies).

Singlehood and childless/child-free are not bastions or life stations of liberal feminists and Democrats only. There are plenty of right wing, Republican, Christian, pro life women who choose to stay single and childless, or who find themselves that way due to circumstance.

Every time these types of right wing jackholes bash liberal feminists for being single and childless, they are also inadvertently bashing Republican, Christian, childless/ childfree women too.

When I tried explaining to these people that I am right wing also, but I am single and childless myself, some of them mellowed out in their criticisms and slams against singles and the childless, but some actually ramped the vitriol up… UNTIL… I quoted this at them:

    8 Now to the unmarried and the widows I say: It is good for them to stay unmarried, as I do.

Once I quoted that from 1 Cor 7, that shut the married Marriage and Baby Idolaters up pronto.

Several replied, “You’re right; the Bible and God are okay with singleness, and women are not expected by God to have kids if they are single, and marriage is a choice, not a commandment. You are right.”

So, 1 Cor 7 can come in handy for an adult single who is getting damn tired of hearing she is a failure or weirdo for not being married past her 20s.

Oddly, the fact that Jesus Christ and Paul were single seem to usually not leave much of an impact on married Marriage and Family Idolaters, when that fact is thrown in their faces.

But, and stranger still, Jesus’ and Paul’s singlehood and childless status is none-the-less a tid bit that Married, Christian Condescending People like to remind Non-Content Adult Singles of.

Seems like 30% – 40% of articles I read for singles by married Christians likes to offer the chirpy reminder, “Remember, singles, Jesus and Paul were single and childless too!”

Okay, Enthusiastic Christian Married Guy, it’s good for you to respect singleness and being childless by recognizing that Jesus Christ and Paul was single and childless.

Married Christians should indeed keep that in mind, that Christ and Paul were single and childless, because God knows, Christians often go blank on that and assume Marriage and Kids are God’s default for EVERYONE.

However, while that is great for Jesus and Paul, I personally would like to marry so I can bang a man weekly (ie, get my sexual lusts fulfilled), have some constant companionship, to stave off bouts of loneliness. Maybe get chocolates in a heart shaped box on Valentine’s from a sweetie pie, instead of eating Campbell’s soup for one over the sink again. That sort of stuff.

On the one hand, 1 Cor 7 can be used as a weapon against married Christians by singles, against the types of married Christians who tend to elevate marriage at the expense of singles and singleness. That is to the single’s advantage.

On the other hand, some Christians, usually married idiots, misuse 1 Cor 7 as a battering ram against adult singles who want to get married.

And that is not right; the twisting or abuse of 1 Cor 7, borders on this:

1 Timothy 4:3

    3 They forbid people to marry and order them to abstain from certain foods, which God created to be received with thanksgiving by those who believe and who know the truth.

I’m an American in 2014. There is no “present” crisis going on with me personally in 2014 America, as there was when Paul wrote to people telling them it is better for them to remain as they were (single if single, or married if married), given their “present crisis.”

Whatever that crisis was – maybe Christians were being persecuted for being Christian?

Continue reading “Singles Who Desire Marriage and 1 Corinthians 7 – but 1 Timothy 4:3 – Also: Singlehood and Messed Up Hermeneutics”

More Singles Commentary by Mark Driscoll (“Two Mistakes Singles Make”)

More Singles Commentary by Mark Driscoll

Hats off to Stephanie Drury who must have a stomach made of iron
(edit: however, Drury herself is a pretty awful person, see my blog posts about her, such as (Link): this one).
I am guessing she visits the Mars Hill (Driscoll’s) blog daily? I don’t have the fortitude to do that.

Anyway, I found this link via Drury’s Facebook group, Stuff Christian Culture Likes (link)

Here is the link to Driscoll’s page, which I will dissect momentarily:
(Link): Two Mistakes Singles Make

Driscoll actually lists, under point 1,
MISTAKE #1: IDOLIZE MARRIAGE

Remember, Driscoll is directing this advice at the UN-married.

And I say: No, no, no (I sound like Amy Winehouse there, sorry).

It’s not singles who idolize marriage, it’s Christian culture, primarily the Christians who are already married, such as Driscoll himself.

Driscoll actually wrote an editorial idolizing parenthood a few weeks ago, called “Who’s Afraid of Pregnant Women.” You can read it here:
(Link): Who’s Afraid of Pregnant Women, by Driscoll.
Driscoll’s editorial was similar to the one I wrote about here, one by Hemingway:
(Link): Response to the Hemingway Editorial ‘Fecundophobia’ – conservatives and Christians continue to idolize children, marriage – which is unbiblical.

Both pieces, the one by Driscoll, and the one by Hemingway, idolize pro-creation and leave no room for the New Testament’s position that lifelong childless-ness and singlehood are fine with God.

It’s hypocritical for Driscoll to shame Christian singles who either desire marriage and parenting for themselves, or who choose to forgo one or both, when he is in fact upholding marriage and parenting in editorials, blogs, and sermons as being laudable goals all should aspire to, especially women.

Not only do married Christians idealize and idolize marriage and parenting, and hold both up as benchmarks a Christian needs to prove success in life, but if a childless or unmarried Christian actively pursues both or either, they will be guilted and shamed for it by these marriage- and parenting- idolizing married Christians, even as Driscoll did in (Link): his previous posts about singles.

If you, a single, admit to wanting marriage, or ask for prayer from another believer that God send you a spouse, or you admit to using a dating site to try to find a marital partner, these pro-marriage married Christians will accuse you of lacking faith, worshipping marriage, trying to fill Jesus’ place with a spouse ((Link): see Driscoll again), not being content in your singleness, and all manner of other negative accusations.

Marriage does not happen magically, folks.

If you were not fortunate enough to meet your sweetie while in college and find yourself still single at age 30 or older, you have no choice but to actively pursue a mate via bars, night clubs, dating sites, and so forth.

From the time I was a pre-teen up until my mid or late 30s, I sincerely believed the Christian propaganda that if only I prayed for a spouse, stayed sexually pure, put God first in my life, trusted God, etc, that God would send me a spouse.

And yet, I find myself still not-married at age 40+.

Obviously, being passive about getting a husband (ie, using prayer, faith, etc) does not work.

(I am not saying that being active is a guarantee, either: sadly, even though some people chase after a spouse and join many dating sites, they sill remain single.
But in my view, your chances of getting married are bound to increase if you do go out and look, and not simply sit about praying and waiting.)

In his introduction, Driscoll gets it wrong:

    • For the first time in American history, the majority of adults are single rather than married. Nine out of ten people eventually marry. The average man is about 30 years old for his first marriage, and the average woman is in her late 20s for her first marriage. This is nearly a decade later than was the case 60 years ago, which has contributed to such things as fornication and cohabitation.
    —- end Driscoll excerpt —

Later age of marriage does not necessarily increase, or contribute to, fornication. I’m in my 40s and still a virgin, hello.

It’s both a Christian and Non Christian myth that no human being can go without sex past one’s early or mid twenties, so to stave off fornication, it is assumed one must marry by age 18 or 21.

By the way: I may be a virgin at age 40+, but I have a normal libido.

It’s another false assumption by married Christians and married Non Christians that a 40 year old virgin must:
1. have a medical problem leading to low libido
2. be fat and ugly (not true, I was engaged and have been “hit on’ by both Christian and Non-Christian men)

One reason of several I am still a virgin in my 40s is due to SELF CONTROL and CHOICE.

God did not magically “gift” me or “call me to” virginity, celibacy, or singleness.

Truths:
1a. People CAN CONTROL THEIR SEXUAL BEHAVIOR.
1b. Just because you get horny does NOT mean you HAVE TO HAVE SEX.

These (points 1a and 1b) are points that continue to sail over the heads of the Mark Driscolls of the world, due in part to secular influences in their thinking and a misunderstanding of the Bible’s teachings on celibacy, singlehood, and sex.

Also, marriage does not preclude or prevent sexual sin:
I have many, many blog posts on my blog here where I have linked to many news stories of MARRIED CHRISTIANS, some of whom are preachers, who have been caught, or arrested for, among other things, rape, pornography, spousal abuse, drug abuse, running prostitution rings, or for raping children.

It is simply naive or false to depict singleness as being a position where in one is more apt to commit sexual sin, when there are so many married couples who are having affairs, using porn, visiting prostitutes, or molesting children.

I could be wrong, but since Driscoll cites the information about age of first marriage being late twenties for most people these days, as opposed to a few decades ago, when many people got married early/ mid 20s, that he seems to be an advocate for “early marriage.” I have links below refuting the “early marriage” view that so many Christians are currently advocating.

Driscoll’s point two is MISTAKE #2: DEMONIZE MARRIAGE, where Driscoll writes,

    • Your greatest joy is being alone. You like your freedom and don’t want anyone else to encroach upon your life because you’d be forced to consider them, accommodate them, or serve them.
    — end Driscoll excerpt —-

This view is not biblical, so I have no idea why he’s putting contentment with being alone down, as though it is a negative thing.

The Bible does not command all to marry but rather presents life time singleness as being perfectly acceptable to God.

The Bible does not condemn preferring solitude, introversion, or singleness to being married or wanting companionship.

I’d also have to point out to this guy that as my dream of marriage fades, I’ve had no choice but to learn to accept my singleness. I’ve grown to enjoy my time alone (it also doesn’t hurt that I am naturally an introvert and prefer being alone, yay me).

Would this Driscoll guy rather I cry into my pillow nightly over being single, or just enjoy living my life as-is?

Driscoll just said in his (Link): previous post about single women that single females should not put their lives on hold and mope about over not being married.

Now, however, Driscoll seems to be saying if you have mostly made peace with your alone-ness, that is wrong too.

Well, FFS, which is it?

Does Driscoll want singles mooning, moping away, and pining for marriage, or coming to terms with being mostly okay with singlehood?

That’s one thing I hate about these articles by Christians about singles: they are chock full of double standards and contradictions, and this is but one:
Married Christians want you to be happy being single but not TOO happy.

You, as an adult single, according to married Christians, are supposed to find just the right balance of hankering for marriage, but not be so okay with being single that you’re not spazzing out and worrying over being single.

Married Christians claim they want you to be “content” with your singleness, yet, if you truly are content with it (at least part of the time, or most of the time), they disapprove of your contentment.

It seems to piss off some married Christians that you, the single, feel fine with being single, if not all the time, at least most of the time. Some married Christians want you, the single, to pine and hanker for marriage, at least a little bit, and if you do not, they assume you are selfish or unChristian in some capacity.

Continue reading “More Singles Commentary by Mark Driscoll (“Two Mistakes Singles Make”)”

Are There Any Protestant or Baptist Singles – Friendly Churches or Denominations ? / Singles Single Adult Childfree Childless Age 30 40 50 Christian

Are There Any Protestant or Baptist Singles Friendly Churches or Denominations?

Note: For Singles Over the Age of 29 – who are 30 and older

It’s quite obvious to me, coming from an evangelical, or Southern Baptist history, and being familiar with Fundamentalists, that most evangelical, Southern Baptist, and Fundamentalist Christianity treats unmarried adults horribly. Like dog crap, as a matter of fact.

Does anyone know of any churches or denominations (Protestant or Baptist groups) that treat singles with respect, that actually minister to singles and do not idolize marriage and making babies?

Do you know of a church or denomination that takes PRACTICAL STEPS to fix singles up with each other for the purpose of marriage (e.g., arranges and hosts many singles mixers), or at least prays that their singles get married?

If so, please leave comments in the comments below this post. Please identify the church and explain how they are good to and for singles.

I seriously doubt there are any such churches or denominations, but I present this post as an opportunity to be shown otherwise.

In all my extensive web searching for articles and blogs about Christianity and singleness (and believe you me, I’ve done a ton of googling on this stuff), I have yet to find even a single blog post or article, by an un-married Christian, claiming that “XYZ Church” or “XYZ Denomination” is gosh golly gee whiz great, tom T teriffic, “I advise all single adults to join XYZ and find fulfilment as I and all my single pals did!” I have yet to find such testimonies. And I’ve been internet searching this stuff for a few years now.

(Usually, if I do find a glowing “my church is awesome for singles!,” review, the two or three such posts I’ve seen, were written by 22 year old kids. I already concede churches are good at ass-kissing 20 year old singles, but they ignore every one over 25 – 30 who is still single.)

I have seen Roman Catholic and Mormon singles bitch and moan on their forums and blogs abut how their respective denominations treat the unmarried over the age of 25 / 30 like trash.

I’m mentioning this topic because I have come across one or two people on other sites, who, upon reading my rants on these topics, insist that THEIR church/denomination is great for singles!

If memory serves, these are people from Lutheran or Presbyterian churches.

….AMUSING AND SAD SIDE STORY (Example of Christian Married People Prejudice Against, and Hatred of, Christian Adult Singles)….

One of the women telling me that her denomination is just wonderful with adult singles is a married woman, who is, I believe, in her 50s or 60s, who displays the most loathesome, horrible, condescending attitudes towards single women.

This married Christian woman does not think her husband (or any woman’s husband, even if a Christian) should ever have to provide any sort of practical assistance, or emotional support, to any single woman who approaches him for help, and she is quite snotty in how she discusses this, as though she thinks all single women are dog crap, and are trolling to steal her hubby.

And this is on a “Christian” blog by a woman who claims to be Christian who says her church is sweet and loving to adult singles.

I think, if I remember right, she was suggesting I attend her denomination because as a never married woman, I would be welcome there, unlike Baptist or evangelical churches.

Yes, let that sink in:

This rude, condescending woman hates adult single women, thinks Christian married couples should not have to help any un-married woman (note: this totally contradicts Christ’s teachings about the body of believers supporting each other), nor should singles ask married people for help (she thinks that is rude and suspicious of them), yet she claims her church is so awesome at being sweet, kind, and loving to adult singles.

I told her if her sh-tty, rude, insulting, paranoid attitudes towards adult single (Christian) women in the comments on the blog was indicative of her denomination’s attitude overall towards the un-married, that I seriously doubt they are as loving, kind, and eager to help adult singles as she was claiming.

… Where is the Online Evidence?…

If Lutherans and Presbyterians (or some other denominations – I think I’ve seen some claim Methodists are great with adult singles) are so totally awesome, dan- dandy, superb at unmarried adult inclusion, and meeting the needs of singles, and not making an idol of marriage…. why then am I not finding evidence of this online?

Would I not have come across handfulls of posts by unmarried adults that say,

    • “Hello, I’m Susie Christian. I attend ECLA (Evangelical Lutheran Church), and I find they are great towards unmarried adults. They allow us to teach and lead.

They don’t give preferential treatment to married couples with children. They don’t make every sermon about marriage!

The married women don’t treat us like harlots who want to steal their men! Singleness is not treated like a disease at ECLA!

My church/ denomination is NOT baby- or kid- centric! Womanhood is not confined to only motherhood or marriage.”

I have yet to come across even a single blog post like that, or a single article.

Even if I did, that would be one too few. I’d have to see a pattern of them, like blog posts spaced out over the past decade, written by different people, on different blogs.

I am just really, really skeptical that there is an old mainline Protestant group, or non denomination mega (or small) church, that treats singles or singleness with respect, but if you feel you know of any, please feel free to tell me about them in a post below. Thank you.


Related posts this blog:

(Link): Never Married Christians Over Age 35 who are childless Are More Ignored Than Divorced or Infertile People or Single Parents

(Link): Salvation By Marriage Alone – The Over Emphasis Upon Marriage by Conservative Christians Evangelicals Southern Baptists

(Link): The Netherworld of Singleness for Some Singles – You Want Marriage But Don’t Want to Be Disrespected or Ignored for Being Single While You’re Single

(Link): Thoughts Regarding ‘Crisis in the Christian Church: A Lack of Young, Single Men’ Essay by S. Green